Author and illustrator Kevin Scott Collier talks about his newest title, “Heaven Quest”.
Hi Kevin! Welcome on “Veronika asks”! If you could describe yourself with three words…
Creative, Imaginative and Inspired.
You’re both an author and illustrator. What did you start with?
I drew first at age 5, then learned how to write. Creating characters via art always provokes writing, as characters need identities and adventures!
Let’s talk a bit about your latest book, “Heaven Quest”…
I think it’s the best book I’ve written. It’s co-authored by Kristen Halter, and we worked as a team creating the Heaven Quest Universe featuring teenage alien Izzy Warp and his dog. It was a book I juggled writing with Kris for like 8 months trading chapters and had no idea how it would end up. When you are really busy being pulled in all directions you just work, work, work and rarely have time to sit back and absorb one particular project for its worth. When “Heaven Quest” was finished, Kris and I both went, Whoa!” I had no idea how special it was until I read the final manuscript. It’s an entertaining book, but also very tender and pulls at the heart strings regarding love and faith.
I read on your website that you help young authors by offering, several times a year, free illustrations. That’s great! Why do you do that? How did you get that idea?
Because when I was growing up there were not people there with talents or skills to help me. I feel if there is a talent you can share, it means nothing unless you do.
How do you prefer to work? Does a plot pop in first? Or does it start with characters (and then you see what can happen to him)?
Sometimes a story emerges in my mind, other times characters come to mind that provoke a story. It’s like asking what came first, the chicken or the egg. Sometimes it’s one, sometimes it’s the other.
What theme (genre, things) do you prefer to illustrate?
I love drawing animals and creatures as characters. Children are fun to draw, also. A story has to have a purpose, and possess hope. That interests me and inspires my art.
How do you see your reader? You know, when you say to yourself: “there’s somebody reading my book right now”… who do you picture?
Some youth somewhere curled up with one of my books, and his or her eyes are big with wonder. I write stories that touch the hearts of others. I feel the only way you can reach the mind of a child is to touch his or her heart first.
I noticed many of your books are only available on downloading or on CD, not on paper version. Why? Is there a particular reason?
There are ISBN commercial electronic download books. Two companies I work for, Writers Exchange E-Publishing and Guardian Angel Publishing I have created titles that are for sale online. I have done 10 such commercial e-books. They don’t sell in volume like print books, but they are a way for a writer or illustrator to keep up with the market trends.
How do you see ePublishing in some years?
It continues to grow, so who knows? I want to be along for that ride.
Could you tell us more about your upcoming projects?
I am writing a sequel for my book “Esther’s Channel” for Baker Trittin Press. I am also illustrating several books for other authors, including “Peter Potato and The Quest for Knowledge” and “Ashby the Happy Little Elephant” for New World Publishing, co-illustrating “The New Puppy” with Gisele R. LeBlanc for Writers Exchange, and will begin drawing “A Blessed Bethlehem Birth: As told by Abraham and Anna Mousenstern” written by Walter Lee McElligott for Guardian Angel Publishing soon. Another Guardian Angel title I am completing illustrations for is Sharon Lyle-Soffe’s “Rooter and Snuffle” book about two faithful raccoons. Kristen Halter and I are working on a children’s picture book for Tangerine Sky Productions titled “A Pony Named Promise” that she will write and I will illustrate that will be released next year, and also we are turning in an Izzy Warp Heaven Quest e-book for Writers Exchange around January 2007.
Would you like to add something?
Yes… I need some sleep! lol
And now the nothing-to-do-with-books question. You’ve just found 100 $ in your pocket, how will you use that money?
Spend it on someone else.
“Tea or Coffee?”
Saturday evening. Going out or reading a book ?WRITE or DRAW a book!
Holidays. Beach or Mountains ?Beach, always.
Country or City ?CountryWatching a movie.
Comedy or Drama (or something else ?) ?Comedy
Shy or Easy-going ?Both!
Serious or Funny ?Both again!
Traveler or not ?Not much a traveler
Sporty or not ?Very athletic, outdoorsy
The leader in the group or not?Leader
TV show : Law and Order
Movie : It’s a Wonderful Life
Book : Mike Mulligan and his Steam Shovel
Music : Steppenwolf
Food : Pizza
City : Grand Haven, MI
Favorite place to write: Outdoors in nature
Quote or motto : Doers never dream enough and dreamers often do nothing at all.
Thank you, Kevin!
You can visit Kevin’s website http://www.kevinscottcollier.com